Soap Lake schools were shutdown over unsubstantiated threat, SLPD say

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SOAP LAKE — A social media threat that spurred Soap Lake schools to lockdown Friday morning, initially reported to involve a student discussing bringing a firearm onto campus, was later found to be largely unsubstantiated, law enforcement said. The lockdown lifted shortly before 10 a.m., and one student was arrested for obstruction of justice.

Third-party accounts of a group chat on social media app Snapchat were reported as potentially threatening a school shooting, but were later found by investigating officers to include no mention of a weapon or shooting. Instead, officers said one student discussed that they intended to fight a friend, but explicitly stated they did not intend to use a weapon.

A 13-year-old Soap Lake student reportedly was upset with a friend who accused the 13-year-old’s older brother of stealing from the friend’s mom, law enforcement said. The 13-year-old allegedly threatened to beat up his friend if he had told an adult about the purported theft.

A responding officer said that he was interviewing the 13-year-old when the boy’s father attempted to remove him from school, and the father was told the boy was not free to leave. The 13-year-old’s older brother reportedly moved in between law enforcement and his family, which amounted to obstruction of justice, Chief Ryan Cox said Friday afternoon.

The investigating officer said he pushed the older brother once to move him back, the brother moved back in front of the officer, and when the officer pushed him a second time the brother hit the officer’s hand. The brother was then arrested for obstruction of justice.

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